62 1

Nora and Mila

Ch. 32

When Joseph met Leonora again, 7 years after they had split, a strange sense of nostalgia drew him to keep in touch with her. He never expected that it would lead to a slow unraveling of everything he ever thought was finally settled in his life.

Euneirophrenia: The peaceful state of mind after a pleasant dream.

To everyone around him, Joseph was living his dream life. And he would agree with that. After all, he was married to the love of his life, working in his dream job that happened to pay well too, and he had just recently moved into the perfect house. All he was missing now was a family of his own, and he would be content.

That day, he was happy. After a long but rewarding day at the hospital, he finally finished his work and drove home, excitedly anticipating spending the rest of his night with his lovely wife Annette. It was their anniversary that day after all, and he was happy to be celebrating 6 years of being together with her, and 4 of those years being married to her. He even had a gift prepared specially for her and he couldn't wait to see how she would react, for he had spent a lot of thought and effort into getting her the perfect gift.

After a long drive, Joseph reached the driveway into his lovely house by the sea. He had spent countless hours with Annette looking for the perfect house in the suburbs to start their family in. They had chosen this house because of the lovely sea breeze, the spacious rooms, and the front yard, for they both hoped to have many children who would laugh and play together in this beautiful house and make wondeful lasting memories together.

"Annette? I'm home," he said in a playful, almost singsong voice. A figure appeared at the doorway to the kitchen, none other than his beautiful wife Annette.

"Welcome home, darling," she said, walking towards him to give him a kiss on the cheek.

"What's for dinner, my dear?" he asked.

"Oh, I made your favourite dishes, of course," she replied.

"Love you," he said, giving her a kiss back.

Annette quickly worked to set the table for dinner, lighting two candles and placing them between the two of them. "It's been some time since we've had a candlelit dinner, hasn't it?" Annette asked.

"It has," Joseph replied.

As they began to dig in to their delicious meal, Annette asked, "So how was your day at work today, darling?"

"It was alright. A new patient came in today, a little girl named Lilena. Childhood schizophrenia, I'm guessing, and previous assessments have said as much. Her parents seem desperate for some hope, though, but other than what's already been done by her previous psychiatrists, there's not much else I can do either. Still, I'm definitely going to try my best to help," he answered.

"That's great, love," she said, "I always loved that about you. How you never give up, and always try your best to help. After all, that is how we got here after all, isn't it?"

"Yeah," he agreed, "Happy anniversary, my love. May our love be everlasting." He held up his glass of wine for a toast, and she lifted hers up to meet his.

Their glasses met, producing a lovely clinking sound, and they both took a sip of their wine.

As the night went on, they reminisced over their journey together all these years, just enjoying each other's company. They ended the night falling asleep together, holding each other close in the bed.

"Life is good," Joseph thought to himself, as he drifted off to sleep with Annette in his arms.

1